After spending some time in Chiang Mai relaxing it was time to get out of the city. We hired scooters and headed about 80km north up the highway to Chiang Dao.
It is a small village with the main attraction being the pleasant countryside and surrounding hills. One road winds up from the highway to Chiang Dao Cave. Further up the road are guesthouses before the national park goes up to the mountains.
Here is Wat Tham Chiang Dao with the peak in the background, the entrance to the caves is here. There are plenty of scenic views across the countryside, where you can look out at the rice fields whilst riding around.
One of the signature local foods available in Chiang Mai and this area is Khao Soi. The dish is best described as red curry noodle soup, with crispy fried noodles on top. Traditionally it is served with chicken in, or a chicken leg. This photo was taken at the side of the road for our lunchtime stop. It was maybe the best bowl of soup of the week.
In Chiang Dao we tried some more local noodles. I think this dish is known as Guay Tiaw Nam Tok, which means noodle soup with blood. It is a dark rich meaty flavoured broth with beef.
One other note; there are many traffic police check points around Chiang Mai. They will always stop foreigners to check for licenses and issue fines! We were stopped a few times on the highway heading north from Chiang Mai. So it is best to make sure you have the necessary license and paperwork to hand for when they stop you.